Sunday, October 23, 2016

Potentially Inappropriate Extrapolation of Mouse Models

Analogs? Or Cuddly Pets?


Mice are used to study most human health problems. We share at least 95% of our genome with mice, and they can be manipulated to mimic almost human disease...But there are some significant differences between the immune systems of mice and people, so the model may not work as well for autoimmune issues as it does for, say, cardiovascular risk. And autoimmunity is often a complicated problem with diet, stress level, activity levels and genetics all playing a role.

There is always the urge to act quickly to implement new research, but treatments and "lifestyles" that benefit rodents don't alway work for people. 

Meanwhile, my pet deprived younger son and I have often discussed the possibility of a mouse or rat filling the furry creature void at our house. I think, however, we might see feral rodents too often on the New York City subway platforms for a similar creature to be a snuggly companion. 

...And it would certainly be a stressful and potentially unhealthy life for any mouse models living at our house.

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